Praying Drunk Wins The Story Prize Spotlight Award

The Story Prize awarded its annual Spotlight Award to Kyle Minor's Praying Drunk, calling it "visceral, intense, and formally innovative." Read more at The Story Prize blog.

And check out what others have said about Praying Drunk:

“Kyle Minor wants you to know that Praying Drunk is not actually, or only, a collection. In the epigraph, he warns: “These stories are meant to be read in order. This is a book, not just a collection. DON’T SKIP AROUND.’ Minor is right to insist. The stories may span decades as they move from Kentucky to Haiti and points between, but they work in concert to slowly reveal the landscape of an emotionally desolate quasi-America sinking under the weight of its own faith. . . . Minor writes beautifully about these ruined lives.”

—New York Times Book Review

“An award-winning short fiction author offers twelve stories so ripe with realism as to suggest a roman à clef. . . . This brilliant collection unfolds around a fractured narrative of faith and friends and family, loved and lost.”

Kirkus Reviews, Starred Review

“To read Praying Drunk is to open yourself up to the type of rumination that some might be afraid of: namely, how can anyone have faith when humans do so much to distort godliness?. . . . The collection acts as a crisis of faith in a part of America that is steeped in faith. How does it feel for a former preacher to wander a landscape of the devout? Melancholy, to be sure. The beauty of Praying Drunk, though, is that it transcends suffering to evoke the sublime.”

—L.A. Times

“The collection’s masterpiece, the novella “In a Distant Country,” works in epistolary style through a wide array of correspondents. All are connected somehow to a troubled Baptist mission in Haiti, and their community portrait, thanks to Minor’s ventriloquism, achieves tragic stature. . . . [a] grim yet terrific collection.”

—Boston Globe

Praying Drunk is ostensibly a collection of stories—but a disclaimer on the first page warns against reading out of order, or sampling your way through. That’s because nothing here is contained, the way a hit single on a record stands alone—characters recur, themes and forms are deepened and visited again, moments glimpsed earlier come back with haunting force. These stories refuse to stay inside themselves.”

—The Atlantic

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